GRETNA, La. (WGNO) – An undercover police officer and two suspected drug dealers were injured during a shootout at a strip mall Tuesday afternoon in Gretna.
Authorities say an officer with the West Bank Major Crime Task Force attempted to buy heroin from two men around 3 p.m. in the 900 block of Westbank Expressway Trail.
As officers went to arrest the suspects they began to fight back.
In a release police say the driver of the car, Darryl Johnson, 22, began to ram a police vehicle, when officers got out of the car, Johnson then changed directions and sped towards them barely missing one officer.
Fearing for their lives police on the scene opened fire.
Johnson received a gunshot wound to the face and is currently in critical condition. Johnson’s 23-year-old passenger, Darrin Jones, received multiple gunshot wounds and is in stable condition.
Both suspects have extensive criminal histories. Johnson is currently on probation and parole for several drug charges, and has numerous arrests for drug violations, weapons violations and possession of a weapon by a convicted felon.
Jones is currently on parole for second degree murder until 2019, he is also on probation for illegal carrying of weapons, and prior drug convictions.
An officer with the task force was also struck, possibly from a ricochet bullet, Tuesday. He was wearing a bullet-proof vest but was grazed in the arm by a bullet. His injuries are said to be not life-threatening.
At this time the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s office is working with the Gretna Police Department to recreate the shooting.
The Westbank Major Crime Task Force is comprised of the Gretna Police Department, Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, Plaquemines Parish Sheriff’s Office, Orleans Parish Criminal Sheriff’s Office and the Westwego Police Department.